Child custody is an especially challenging part of divorce proceedings. Joint custody of the children may allow both parents to remain in close contact with their children. But the calm can easily give way to disputes when one parent wants or needs to move away. If you find yourself in a move away situation after a divorce, whether you are the parent moving away or the parent opposing the move away, it is important to hire an experienced Central Valley move away child custody attorney to help with the process.
Legal Help to Solve Parent Move-Away Problems
California has established specific rules and statutes determining the process for moving a child when parents share custody. The first step the parent planning to move away with children needs to take is file a petition with the court. Regardless of where you live, the issue generally becomes the other parent opposing the move. If you are the move-away parent, you need to hire an experienced Central Valley child custody attorney to help prove to the court why your move is necessary and, in your child’s, best interests.
Common reasons why custodial parents move include:
- New career opportunities
- Loss of a job
- Medical care for you or your child
- Caring for a parent or relative in another state
- Marriage or a serious relationship
California laws that specifically deal with move-aways are set out in Family Code Sections 3020, 3087, and 3185 and in In re Marriage of LaMusga (2004) 32 Cal.4th 1072.
Custodial Parents Are Favored in Move Aways
The Primary Custodial parent has the presumptive right to move in California. California Family Code Section 7501 states:
- A parent entitled to the custody of a child has a right to change the residence of the child
- The Legislature to affirm the decision in In re Marriage of Burgess (1996) 13 Cal.4th 25, and to declare that ruling to be the public policy and law of this state.
The court will generally use the same standards and burden of proof in move-away cases as in all custody adjudication when evaluating a parent’s request to relocate the residence of their minor child. The test that the court uses is commonly referred to as the “Best Interests Test.” Accordingly the Court must look to all the circumstances bearing on the child’s best interest, including of course the mandatory Family Code Section 3011, et al. factors.
Call an Experienced Central Valley Divorce Attorney
If you are involved in a divorce proceeding, planning to file for divorce, or are dealing specifically dealing with child custody issues, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced family law attorney to help you learn your legal rights and options with respect to the division of your assets.
For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with Central Valley family law attorney Gurjit Srai, please call (209) 323-5558 or (559) 449-1447, or complete our online form.